The Johns Hopkins interventional radiology physicians play a critical role as part of the Cancer Center team. Ours is a rapidly evolving field where innovative techniques for both diagnosing and treating cancer are now available resulting in prolonged quality survival for patients with cancer.
Interventional oncology, practiced by interventional radiologists, is one of four parts of a multidisciplinary team approach in the treatment of cancer and cancer related disorders. The others include medical oncology, surgical oncology and radiation oncology.
Interventional oncology procedures provide minimally invasive, targeted treatment of cancer. Image guidance is used in combination with the most current innovations available to treat cancerous tumors while minimizing possible injury to other body organs. Most patients having these procedures are outpatients or require a one night stay in the hospital.
- Some of these therapies are regional, as when treating cancers involving several areas of the liver with chemoembolization or radioembolization.
- Others are better classified as local, as when treating focal lesions in the kidney, liver, lung and bone with cryoablation (freezing), or microwave or radiofrequency ablation (heating).
In general, these techniques are reserved for patients whose cancer cannot be surgically removed or effectively treated with systemic chemotherapy. These procedures are also frequently used in combination with other therapies provided by other members of the cancer team.